Saturday, June 28, 2014



Novena Prayer to the Immaculate Heart of Mary

O Most Blessed Mother,
heart of love,
heart of mercy,
ever listening, caring, consoling,
hear our prayer.
As your children,
we implore your intercession with Jesus your Son.
Receive with understanding and compassion the petitions we place before you today, especially ...

(special intention).

We are comforted in knowing your heart is ever open to those who ask for your prayer.
We trust to your gentle care and intercession,
those whom we love and who are sick or lonely or hurting.
Help all of us,
Holy Mother,
to bear our burdens in this life until we may share eternal life and peace with God forever.



Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary

LAM 2:2, 10-14, 18-19

The Lord has consumed without pity
all the dwellings of Jacob;
He has torn down in his anger
the fortresses of daughter Judah;
He has brought to the ground in dishonor
her king and her princes.

On the ground in silence sit
the old men of daughter Zion;
They strew dust on their heads
and gird themselves with sackcloth;
The maidens of Jerusalem
bow their heads to the ground.

Worn out from weeping are my eyes,
within me all is in ferment;
My gall is poured out on the ground
because of the downfall of the daughter of my people,
As child and infant faint away
in the open spaces of the town.

In vain they ask their mothers,
“Where is the grain?”
As they faint away like the wounded
in the streets of the city,
And breathe their last
in their mothers’ arms.

To what can I liken or compare you,
O daughter Jerusalem?
What example can I show you for your comfort,
virgin daughter Zion?
For great as the sea is your downfall;
who can heal you?

Your prophets had for you
false and specious visions;
They did not lay bare your guilt,
to avert your fate;
They beheld for you in vision
false and misleading portents.

Cry out to the Lord;
moan, O daughter Zion!
Let your tears flow like a torrent
day and night;
Let there be no respite for you,
no repose for your eyes.

Rise up, shrill in the night,
at the beginning of every watch;
Pour out your heart like water
in the presence of the Lord;
Lift up your hands to him
for the lives of your little ones
Who faint from hunger
at the corner of every street.

Responsorial Psalm
PS 74:1B-2, 3-5, 6-7, 20-21

R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.

Why, O God, have you cast us off forever?
Why does your anger smolder against the sheep of your pasture?
Remember your flock which you built up of old,
the tribe you redeemed as your inheritance,
Mount Zion, where you took up your abode.

R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.

Turn your steps toward the utter ruins;
toward all the damage the enemy has done in the sanctuary.
Your foes roar triumphantly in your shrine;
they have set up their tokens of victory.
They are like men coming up with axes to a clump of trees.

R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.

With chisel and hammer they hack at all the paneling of the sanctuary.
They set your sanctuary on fire;
the place where your name abides they have razed and profaned.

R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.

Look to your covenant,
for the hiding places in the land and the plains are full of violence.
May the humble not retire in confusion;
may the afflicted and the poor praise your name.

R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.

LK 2:41-51

Each year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the feast of Passover,
and when he was twelve years old,
they went up according to festival custom.
After they had completed its days, as they were returning,
the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem,
but his parents did not know it.
Thinking that he was in the caravan,
they journeyed for a day
and looked for him among their relatives and acquaintances,
but not finding him,
they returned to Jerusalem to look for him.
After three days they found him in the temple,
sitting in the midst of the teachers,
listening to them and asking them questions,
and all who heard him were astounded
at his understanding and his answers.
When his parents saw him,
they were astonished,
and his mother said to him,
“Son, why have you done this to us?
Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety.”

And he said to them,

“Why were you looking for me?
Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”

But they did not understand what he said to them.
He went down with them and came to Nazareth,
and was obedient to them;
and his mother kept all these things in her heart.


June 28

St. Irenaeus (130?-220)

The Church is fortunate that Irenaeus was involved in many of its controversies in the second century. He was a student, well trained, no doubt, with great patience in investigating, tremendously protective of apostolic teaching, 
but prompted more by a desire to win over his opponents than to prove them in error.

As bishop of Lyons he was especially concerned with the Gnostics, who took their name from the Greek word for “knowledge.” Claiming access to secret knowledge imparted by Jesus to only a few disciples, their teaching was attracting and confusing many Christians. After thoroughly investigating the various Gnostic sects and their “secret,” Irenaeus showed to what logical conclusions their tenets led. These he contrasted with the teaching of the apostles and the text of Holy Scripture, giving us, in five books, a system of theology of great importance to subsequent times. Moreover, his work, 
widely used and translated into Latin and Armenian, gradually ended the influence of the Gnostics.

The circumstances and details about his death, like those of his birth and early life in Asia Minor, are not at all clear.


O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will proclaim Your Praise!

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 99 (100)

Christ is the son of Mary:
come, let us adore him.

Rejoice in the Lord, all the earth,
and serve him with joy.
Exult as you enter his presence.

Christ is the son of Mary:
come, let us adore him.

Know that the Lord is God.
He made us and we are his
– his people, the sheep of his flock.

Christ is the son of Mary:
come, let us adore him.

Cry out his praises as you enter his gates,
fill his courtyards with songs.
Proclaim him and bless his name;
for the Lord is our delight.
His mercy lasts forever,
his faithfulness through all the ages.

Christ is the son of Mary:
come, let us adore him.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end.

Christ is the son of Mary:
come, let us adore him.


Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
In light inaccessible hid from our eyes,
Most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
Almighty, victorious, thy great Name we praise.
Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,
Nor wanting, nor wasting, thou rulest in might;
Thy justice like mountains high soaring above
Thy clouds, which are fountains of goodness and love.
To all life thou givest, to both great and small;
In all life thou livest, the true life of all;
We blossom and flourish, like leaves on the tree,
Then wither and perish; but naught changeth thee.
Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,
Thine angels adore thee, all veiling their sight;
All laud we would render: O help us to see
‘Tis only the splendour of light hideth thee.

Psalm 49 (50)
True reverence for the Lord

The Lord has summoned heaven and earth 
to witness his judgement of his people.

The Lord, the God of gods has spoken:
he has summoned the whole earth, from east to west.
God has shone forth from Zion in her great beauty.
Our God will come, and he will not be silent.
Before him, a devouring fire;
around him, a tempest rages.
He will call upon the heavens above, and on the earth, to judge his people.
“Bring together before me my chosen ones, who have sealed my covenant with sacrifice.”
The heavens will proclaim his justice; for God is the true judge.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end.

The Lord has summoned heaven and earth 
to witness his judgement of his people.

Psalm 49 (50)

Call on me in the day of trouble, and I will come to free you.

Listen, my people, and I will speak;
Israel, I will testify against you.
I am God, your God.
I will not reproach you with your sacrifices,
for your burnt offerings are always before me.
But I will not accept calves from your houses,
nor goats from your flocks.
For all the beasts of the forests are mine,
and in the hills, a thousand animals.
All the birds of the air – I know them.
Whatever moves in the fields – it is mine.
If I am hungry, I will not tell you;
for the whole world is mine, and all that is in it.
Am I to eat the flesh of bulls,
or drink the blood of goats?
Offer a sacrifice to God – a sacrifice of praise;
to the Most High, fulfil your vows.
Then you may call upon me in the time of trouble:
I will rescue you, and you will honor me.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end.

Call on me in the day of trouble, and I will come to free you.

Psalm 49 (50)

A sacrifice of thanksgiving will honor me.

To the sinner, God has said this:
Why do you recite my statutes?
Why do you dare to speak my covenant?
For you hate what I teach you,
and reject what I tell you.
The moment you saw a thief, you joined him;
you threw in your lot with adulterers.
You spoke evil with your mouth,
and your tongue made plans to deceive.
Solemnly seated, you denounced your own brother;
you poured forth hatred against your own mother’s son.
All this you did, and I was silent;
so you thought that I was just like you.
But I will reprove you –
I will confront you with all you have done.
Understand this, you who forget God;
lest I tear you apart, with no-one there to save you.
Whoever offers up a sacrifice of praise gives me true honor;
whoever follows a sinless path in life will be shown the salvation of God.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end.

A sacrifice of thanksgiving will honor me.

We ceaselessly pray to God for you.
– For you to have the fullest knowledge of God’s will.

First Reading
1 Samuel 26:5-25

Setting off, David went to the place where Saul had pitched camp. 
He saw the place where Saul and Abner son of Ner commander of his army were lying. 
Saul was lying inside the camp with the troops bivouacking round him.

Speaking to Ahimelech the Hittite and Abishai son of Zeruiah and brother of Joab, David said, ‘Who will come down with me into the camp of Saul?’ Abishai answered, ‘I will go down with you.’ So in the dark David and Abishai made their way towards the force, where they found Saul lying asleep inside the camp, his spear stuck in the ground beside his head, 
with Abner and the troops lying round him.

Then Abishai said to David, ‘Today God has put your enemy in your power; so now let me pin him to the ground with his own spear. Just one stroke! I will not need to strike him twice.’ David answered Abishai, ‘Do not kill him, for who can lift his hand against the Lord’s anointed and be without guilt? As the Lord lives,’ David said ‘the Lord himself will strike him down, whether his time to die comes, or he goes out to battle and perishes then. The Lord forbid that I should raise my hand against the Lord’s anointed! But now take the spear beside his head and the pitcher of water and let us go away.’ David took the spear and the pitcher of water from beside Saul’s head, and they made off. No one saw, no one knew, no one woke up; 
they were all asleep, for a deep sleep from the Lord had fallen on them.

David crossed to the other side and halted on the top of the mountain a long way off; there was a wide space between them. David then called out to the troops and to Abner son of Ner, ‘Abner, will you not answer?’ Abner replied, ‘Who is that calling?’ David said to Abner, ‘Are you not a man? Who is your like in Israel? Why did you not guard your lord the king then? Some man of the people came to kill the king your lord. What you did was not well done. As the Lord lives, you all deserve to die since you did not guard your lord, the Lord’s anointed. Look where the king’s spear is now, and the pitcher of water that was beside his head.’

Then Saul recognised David’s voice and said, ‘Is that your voice, my son David?’ David answered, ‘It is my voice, my lord king. Why does my lord pursue his servant?’ he said. ‘What have I done? What evil am I guilty of? May my lord king now listen to the words of his servant: if the Lord himself has incited you against me, let him accept an offering; but if men have done it, may they be accursed before the Lord, for now they have driven me out so that I have no share in the heritage of the Lord. They have said, “Go and serve other gods.” So now, do not let my blood fall to the ground out of the presence of the Lord; 
for the king of Israel has gone out in quest of my life as a man hunts a partridge on the mountains.’

Saul replied, ‘I have sinned. Come back, my son David; I will never harm you again since you have shown such respect for my life today. Yes, my course has been folly and my error grave.’ David answered, ‘Here is the king’s spear. Let one of the soldiers come across and take it. The Lord repays everyone for his uprightness and loyalty. Today the Lord put you in my power, but I would not raise my hand against the Lord’s anointed. Just as today your life counted for much in my sight, 
so shall my life count for much in the sight of the Lord and he will deliver me from all distress.’

Then Saul said to David, ‘May you be blessed, my son David! You will do great things and will succeed.’ 
Then David went on his way and Saul returned home.


Insolent men have risen against me,
ruthless men seek my life: save me,
O God, by your name,
and vindicate me by your might.

I will sacrifice to you with willing heart:
O God, hear my prayer
and vindicate me by your might.

Second Reading
A sermon of St Laurence Justinian

Mary kept all these things in her heart

As Mary pondered all she had learned from reading and from what she had heard and seen, how greatly did she increase in faith, advance in merit and become enlightened with wisdom! More and more she was consumed with burning love. Drawing life and inspiration from the heavenly mysteries which were being unlocked for her, she was filled with joy; she became alive with the Spirit, she was guided towards God and was kept humble in herself. The effects of divine grace are such indeed that they raise one from the depths to the heights, and transform one in an ever greater degree of glory. Entirely blessed was the mind of the Virgin which, through the direction of the Spirit dwelling in her, ever obeyed the command of the Word of God in all things. She was governed not by her own judgement or opinions, but she outwardly performed through her body whatever wisdom had indicated inwardly to her faith. It was surely fitting that divine Wisdom, which had built the house of the Church for its abode, should use most holy Mary as its instrument, where the observance of the law, purification of the heart, 
the doctrine of humility and spiritual offering were concerned.

Imitate her, O faithful soul. Enter into the temple of your heart that you may be purified in spirit and cleansed of the pollution of your sins. In everything we do God considers our disposition rather than our actions. And so, whether we retire mentally to God in earnest contemplation and remain at rest or whether we are intent on being of service to those around us with good works and worthy undertakings, let our object be that we are motivated only by love of Christ. So the really acceptable offering of purification of the spirit is that which is rendered not in a man-made temple but in the temple of the heart, 
where Christ the Lord is pleased to enter.


I know not how to praise you,
holy and immaculate Virgin.
Heaven itself cannot contain the One whom you bore in your womb.

Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb.
Heaven itself cannot contain the One whom you bore in your womb.

Let us pray.

God our Father,
you created a worthy dwelling-place for the Holy Spirit
in the heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Grant that through her prayers
we may become a temple fit for your glory.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Let us praise the Lord.
– Thanks be to God.